Hannah Hayward Baker was born 23 February 1839 in Sheerness, England to William and Ruth Hughes Hayward. In 1851, her parents were baptized into The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Two years later, they sailed for America, walked across the plains in a handcart company, and settled in Ogden, Utah. On 25 November 1855 Hannah married a well-educated, wealthy, English immigrant named William George. Hannah and William remained in Ogden until William was called to help keep Johnston's Army from entering Utah. Later, they were called to go to the Richfield, Utah to help settle the area and fortify it against Indians. However, the Blackhawk War forced the abandonment of that community and they went to Manti, Utah. In 1864, President Orson Hyde called them to return to Richfield. Together, they helped settle Richfield, opened the first hotel there, and operated a mail system throughout the southern part of the state. Hannah's home was furnished with stoves, a sewing machine, and a fine organ. She encouraged her family of thirteen children to be involved in local dramatic and musical productions. William married a second wife named Nicolena Marie Bertelsen in 1867, but when he died in 1901, he left Hannah with enough money to sustain her for the remainder of her life. Besides raising thirteen children whom she referred to as her Baker's dozen, Hannah raised two granddaughters for a son whose wife passed away. Hannah died in Richfield, Sevier, Utah on March 14, 1918.
This collection is a combination of various letters, genealogical materials, and biographies of the Baker family. The section containing information on Hannah's family includes pictures, poems written about the family, information on Baker reunions, and the biographies of Hannah and William written by their children. This section is well organized and easy to read. The family writes of Hannah's life in great detail. They write that Hannah was the first one in her family to believe in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. When she immigrated to America with her parents, they walked without oxen or many personal belongings across the plains to Utah. It was an exciting adventure for young Hannah. Although Hannah had a meager education, she married an English gentleman. His mother disapproved of William marrying below his social class and she disinherited him after the marriage. Hannah and William settled in Ogden. When William needed to help keep Johnston's Army from entering Utah, Hannah was left alone to harvest the crops and care for the children: William, Ruth, Henry, William, Frank, Mary, Walter, John, Elizabeth, Eugene, Claude, and Edward. During this time, one son fell into a tub of boiling soap and was scalded over every inch of his body. Hannah was left to care for his many needs on her own. When William returned and they opened the first hotel in Richfield in their home, Hannah cooked three meals a day for the lodgers. Hannah had a great love for the Hymns, which provided her with peace. Her favorite Hymns were: Come, Come Ye Saints, I Know that My Redeemer Lives and Hard Times, Hard Times, Come Again No More. Mormon pioneer, Polygamy, Trek, Trials